The iPad has certainly had quite a bit of press lately. Apple is a company that is very good at marketing their products. At CES there were a variety of Android based tablets that are coming out with just as much functionality as the iPad that just haven't had the same press as Apple's newest product. Consider waiting on your buying decision before getting a tablet.
Android is Google's mobile phone and soon to be tablet and netbook operating system. It will become one of the most popular phones and is soon to be one of the choice operating systems for other devices like these new tablets. This offers a huge advantage to you as a user. You have will have large community of developers for your gadget. It's not to say that Apple does not, but without user approved applications in the long run Android will win out with more applications as developers won't be concerned about being told no.
Another advantage of Android tablets is that they come in different sizes. There are 5 "models and up to 10" models like the iPad. You can pick the device size that you really feel you need to meet your requirements.
You can buy a device that runs the Flash plugin. Some people prefer to have Flash which over 70% of web sites use. It's great for the free, legal television sites like Hulu which have their place on a tablet device as well as the thousands of games available. Android tablets let you make the choice whether you want Flash or not as opposed to it being made for you.
USB connections are a big deal. Having a device that can connect to USB means you have extra space and potentially extra hardware. The iPad does not offer this to consumers.
Since Android is an open platform on all these tablets, netbooks, and phones, it's only a matter of time that all these devices being developed for that you as the consumer will start getting the best applications. The more competition there is over applications, the cheaper they will get and the higher quality you will receive.
If you do want purchase a tablet this year, take a wait and see approach to make sure you are really getting the device you are wanting. The battle between tablets will only improve the quality of them in the coming year with new functions and features.